If you’re asking Big E, New Day Rocks. The two-time WWE Tag Team Champion is having the time of his life working with Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods week after week.
“I couldn’t image two other guys to be doing this with at all,” he admitted during a media call on Wednesday, February 17. “I think we all bring different elements to the table. Obviously Kofi’s been around a while, seemingly forever, he’s a veteran and has a tonne of experience … Woods is so entertaining with the stuff he does with the trombone and the stuff he does on the floor as well but I feel like we all bring an element of entertainment, we all bring an element of being pretty good in he ring. They are two guys who are brothers to me and I mean that in a very genuine sense as much time as we spend around each other and compliment each other. I couldn’t fathom two better guys to be in a group with.”
The trio’s camaraderie and entertaining appearances on WWE programming both in and out of the ring—from Raw and SmackDown to WWE Network exclusives Ride Along and Table For Three—invites comparisons to Edge and Christian. The former multi-time Attitude Era tag champs will interview The New Day on The Cutting Edge Peep Show during WWE Fastlane (February 22, 2pm NZDT).
“I don’t think we ever really wanted to be a copycat of someone else or to rehash what Edge and Christian did,” Big E said. “I definitely see parallels but for us we just wanted to be ourselves and be able to have some fun, but the stuff that happens when the bell’s rung is important as well so that’s something we always wanted to back up and [make sure we’re not] just a comedy act.
“It’s a fine line,” he continued. “There are guys who’ve been able to pull off the comedy but couldn’t necessarily have compelling matches or weren’t put in that position so we wanted to make sure that was something we could do both, and that’s kind of a rarity. That’s something Edge and Christian were able to do and obviously we all grew up watching them and a lot of the stuff that they did was so different.”
After Fastlane comes WrestleMania, and with it speculation about what the tag team champions’ role will be. Perhaps a WWE TLC rematch, pitting The New Day against The Lucha Dragons and The Usos?
“There was a lot of surprise interest in our ladder match for the titles … and I think a lot of us wanted to see if we could pull off a second one and have it be as good or better than the first one,” Big E said.
Kalisto’s emergence as a singles competitor and United States Champion makes a triple threat rematch unlikely but leaves the door open for The New Day to continue their rivalry with The Usos two-on-two, or two-on-three as the case may be.
“I think the Usos are fantastic foils for us and we have a lot of respect for what they do,” Big E said. “It’s really hard to say where things will end up aligning for WrestleMania season but [The Usos are] definitely a team that’s worthy of another shot [at the tag team titles].”
Besides WrestleMania, the live NXT TakeOver: Dallas special will be a highlight on many wrestling fans’ calendars this April. As a former NXT Champion, Big E pays regular attention to the next generation of WWE Superstars appearing on WWE NXT.
“I definitely watch the current product,” he revealed. “It’s cool that it’s an hour. I think that allows talent to be showcased in a way where no one really gets stale and it feels very different to what we do on the main roster. I think having an alternative is always a good thing. I’m a big fan.”
Big E wrestled Xavier Woods in the first match held at Full Sail University, a dark match on the pilot episode for what would—with a few adjustments to the way the product was structured—become the weekly NXT television show.
“To see how much the product has grown and to see them sell out Brooklyn and have these events that people are really rabid for is very cool,” he said. “I don’t look at NXT as a bunch of guys waiting to get to the main roster. I see a lot of guys who have already made it and, in their own right, have really established a name for themselves in a brand that’s very popular with our fans.”
Whether hearing chants of “New Day Rocks” or “New Day Sucks”, Big E doesn’t concern himself with audience reactions. His ultimate concern is entertaining his fellow New Day team-mates and having a good time, whether they’re supposed to be “bad guys” or not.
“For us to constantly worry about what people want and for what roles we need to fit in I think would be a mistake,” Big E said. “We operate in a day and age where roles aren’t that black and white. You have a guy like Kevin Owens, who’s supposed to be a bad guy but a lot of people really enjoy what he does on a nightly basis. For us, what really helps separate us is bringing the entertainment side. For us to really scale that down and try to work in a traditional role that would suit bad guys I think would be a mistake.
“We felt like the people were the reason we ended up going from the happy, clappy good guys to what we are now and if the people eventually end up moving us in another direction so be it,” he continued, “but I think honestly one of the biggest reasons for our success is no longer worrying about what other people thought. Often times if we find things funny we’ll do them. If we find things entertaining, we’ll do them. For us, it’s like we’re out there to entertain ourselves. If people find it entertaining, that’s on them.”
WWE Fastlane airs live on Sky Arena and WWE Network Monday, February 22, from 2pm NZDT.